I woke up this morning in my parent's home at 10 AM after a very busy yesterday playing with Wavelength, Inc. at the NSDC Conference in Dallas, Tx. My mom woke me up in her usual manner, i.e., woke me up when she thinks I should be up, and asked me if I was willing to go to Home Depot. Otherwise, she was going to rake the leaves on the front lawn herself which meant, hey, wake up and help me rake and bag the leaves on the front lawn . So, I got up and helped her.
My mom's lawn is incredibly unique. She has a uniform, brown color across the entire lawn, because there is absolutely no grass growing on it. Nothing like raking leaves off a dirt lawn! I helped rake and bag a good portion of those leaves. Then I thought, "Wait, didn't my brother buy her a leaf blower? Why are we doing this back breaking work?" I asked my mom and she replied, "Yeah, we have one, but I don't have the patience to actually use it. Do you want to try it out?" Of course! What Latino doesn't like blowing leaves?! I was stoked to do it since I have never used one before, and I am not able to actually own/use any kind of power tools in my lovely condo. Any opportunity I get to use them I jump on. It was a pretty cool experience.
Mom was right. It did take a lot longer to put piles of leaves together with it than doing it with a regular rake. I used the attachment to suck up those leaves and mulch it in the process. I loved the smell of mulch twigs and leaves as it reminded me of my next Latino-defining shopping center, Home Depot!
It took us a couple of hours to get the front and back finished. We were visited by an elderly neighbor that I wasn't aware even lived on the block. she approached us and I said, "Howdy!" (I am Texan, aren't I?) She then started asking my mom how she kept her lawn so clean. After a 30 minute conversation, the lady left. My mom and I were both convinced that this lady was feeling out whether or not this nice, strapping young man helping clean up the yard was available to do additional landscaping on her yard (remember, we Latinos are all really good at it! ). By the conversation, she'd known my parents had lived on the block fo years, but now she takes the opportunity to speak to her? C'mon... this wasn't a visit from the "Ooops-We-Forgot-To-Welcome-You-To-The-Neighborhood-So-We're-Doing-It Now-Sorry" Committee!
After finishing with the leaves, mom and I hit up Home Depot and a load of thrift stores to do a bit of shopping. I used my hardly-used Spanish the whole time, and forced myself into situations to use it more even if I was embarrassed at the fact I couldn't express myself fully. It was fun!
Ahh...it's good to be home!
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Release date: 30 January, 2006